Shiraz Maher rss

Shiraz Maher is a Senior Fellow at ICSR, King’s College London, where he looks at political violence in the Middle East and South Asia. He previously worked for the BBC and Policy Exchange.

Abu Hamza. Image: Getty

The Abu Hamza case shows that Britain has outsourced terrorism trials

20 May 2014 20:05

It must seem awfully peculiar to Americans that it should take their courts to convict Abu Hamza on terrorism charges, including a kidnapping he orchestrated in Yemen which resulted in… Continue reading

Islamic Jihad is experiencing a revival (Photo: SAID KHATIB/AFP/Getty)

Thanks to Syria, global jihad is experiencing a revival

20 January 2014 12:30

The arrest of two men last week on terrorism charges relating to Syria reveals just how serious the issue of foreign fighters has become. Estimates suggest that up to 366… Continue reading

The massacre at the Westgate Mall in Nairobi is a reminder of the tragic folly of assuming that Islamism was a spent force. (CARL DE SOUZA/AFP/Getty Images)

Ignoring Islamic terrorism didn’t make it go away

23 September 2013 17:08

Not so long ago politicians were hailing the end of al-Qaeda and the global jihad movement. By the middle of 2011, key ideologues like Osama bin Laden and Anwar al-Awlaki… Continue reading

Photo: Getty

Hitting Assad – and hitting him hard – is urgent and necessary

29 August 2013 11:44

There has been lots of debate about our impending intervention in the Syrian conflict today. Many of my Coffee House colleagues have counselled against intervention, arguing against Danny Finkelstein’s piece… Continue reading

Barack Obama speaking in Berlin in 2009. Image: Getty.

Obama saying ‘never again’ won’t stop dictators

21 August 2013 14:41

When he was still a Presidential candidate in 2008, Barack Obama evoked memories of Presidents John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan by addressing Europeans from Berlin. In what was then… Continue reading

Egyptians carry the coffin of one of the four policemen, killed during clashes with Muslim Brotherhood supporters. Photo: KHALED DESOUKI/AFP/Getty Images

How the Egyptian army handed the Muslim Brotherhood a victory

15 August 2013 16:28

You don’t have to be a supporter of the Muslim Brotherhood’s clerical fashion to recoil at the draconian treatment of its members yesterday. Indeed, some reports now suggest that more… Continue reading

Egyptian supporters of Egypt's Muslim Br

The Muslim Brotherhood’s fight for existence

14 August 2013 12:43

Speak to members of the Muslim Brotherhood and you get a sense of just how imperilled they feel. Ever since Mohammed Mursi was overthrown, members of the group have come… Continue reading

Image: Getty

The Pentagon shows that Barack Obama missed his chance to tip the balance in Syria

23 July 2013 17:52

When General Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, appeared before the Senate Armed Services committee last Thursday an intemperate exchange threatened to derail his bid for reappointment… Continue reading

Egyptian President Morsy Ousted In Military Coup

Egyptian coup underlines America’s diminishing influence in the Middle East

5 July 2013 13:53

This week’s coup in Egypt leaves President Obama’s administration in an awkward position. Although the State Department has insisted it remained neutral in the dispute, American taxpayers have been supporting… Continue reading

Image: Getty

Egypt’s institutions are so weak the army is all that’s left

3 July 2013 16:47

There’s a joke doing the rounds in Tahrir Square which goes like this: ‘Nasser, Sadat, and Mubarak all tried to destroy the Muslim Brotherhood, but only Mursi succeeded’. As protests… Continue reading


Obama’s decision to arm the Syrian rebels will do little to address the Hezbollah threat

14 June 2013 16:03

Two years too late and with less than full conviction President Obama has finally announced that his administration will aid the Syrian rebels with lethal force. This follows confirmation by… Continue reading

Abu Qatada smiles as he evades deportation once again in April 2012. (MIGUEL MEDINA/AFP/GettyImages)

Countering Terrorism in Britain and France, by Frank Foley – review

4 June 2013 9:18

Have you ever wondered why we’re stuck with the radical cleric Abu Qatada? It’s a question the last four Home Secretaries will have asked as they battled, and failed, to… Continue reading

20% of all terrorist convictions in this country can be linked back to Anjem Choudary's al-Muhajiroun network. Picture: Getty

It’s time for MI5 to abandon the disastrous ‘clerical honeypot’ strategy

30 May 2013 18:13

Douglas Murray has an important piece in this week’s Spectator looking at the stultifying political culture around counterterrorism. Civil servants frequently thwart ministers wanting to adopt a harder line against… Continue reading


Will the EU’s rescinding of the Syrian arms embargo have any impact?

28 May 2013 13:37

The EU has said it will not renew an arms embargo on Syria which ends this Saturday. That should pave the way for countries wanting to arm the rebels, something… Continue reading

Egyptian-born cleric Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi praised Hamas for firing rockets into Israel. Picture: Getty

Why engaging with the Muslim Brotherhood isn’t quite as simple as it seems

12 May 2013 17:48

Conventional wisdom has long suggested that we should engage pernicious groups like the Muslim Brotherhood in order to defang them. Just talk to them, it is said, and you’ll discover… Continue reading

Image: Getty

The real significance of Israel’s strikes on Syria

7 May 2013 16:32

It is hard to overstate the significance of Israel’s surgical strikes against Syrian military positions over the weekend. The raids targeted missiles bound for Hezbollah in Lebanon while also destroying… Continue reading


What can Obama do about Syria?

26 April 2013 15:46

Even John Kerry is now confirming what was already long suspected: that Bashar al-Assad has used chemical weapons against his own people. In all likelihood, he has used Sarin nerve… Continue reading

The Christian Maronite church in the Jdeideh neighbourhood of Aleppo, which was hit by a rocket last year. (JOSEPH EID/AFP/Getty Images)

The glaring failure of the Arab Spring

24 April 2013 9:51

Two Bishops carrying out relief work in northern Syria appear to have been kidnapped by rebels, underscoring the increasingly sectarian dimension of the conflict. Syria’s minorities have long worried about… Continue reading

A makeshift memorial for the victims of the Boston marathon bombing. Picture: Getty

Boston bombing suspects: what we know, and what we don’t

20 April 2013 21:04

With the manhunt for the alleged perpetrators of the Boston bombings – Tamerlan and Dzhokar Tsarnaev – now over, a complex and confusing picture is emerging of the two men… Continue reading

Universities are beginning to address problems of segregation on campus. Picture: Getty

It’s time for universities to address segregation on their campuses

15 April 2013 16:57

There’s an interesting battle shaping up on university campuses over Islamic societies segregating their events. Today’s Guardian highlights the most recent example of this at the University of Leicester where… Continue reading

Egyptian satirist and television host Bassem Youssef is surrounded by his supporters upon his arrival at the public prosecutor's office in the high court in Cairo, on March 31, 2013.  (KHALED DESOUKI/AFP/Getty Images)

Bassem Youssef’s arrest is just one example of the attack on free speech in Egypt

4 April 2013 14:34

Bassem Youssef is better known as ‘Egypt’s John Stewart’. He is a 39 year old cardiologist who made his name with an online comedy programme styled along the lines of… Continue reading

Prince Charles And The Duchess Of Cornwall visit Riyadh library. Picture: Getty

The Saudis oppress their people and expect visitors to look the other way

21 March 2013 11:26

Prince Charles visited Saudi Arabia this week; one of several high-profile visitors to the kingdom in recent weeks, following separate trips by John Kerry and US Attorney General Eric Holder.… Continue reading

A member of the Free Syrian Army holds a burning portrait of embattled President Bashar al-Assad. Picture: Getty

Two years on, the Syrian revolution in numbers

15 March 2013 13:40

The original defiance came without malice or forethought. A group of barely pubescent schoolchildren, buoyed by the revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt, bought a can of spray paint. ‘The people… Continue reading

Free Syrian Army protestors. Image: Getty

Assad’s jihad against Syrian rebels, and what it tells us about his regime

11 March 2013 15:34

Syrian state TV broadcast a remarkable statement last night calling for an ‘Islamic jihad’ against what it termed ‘Zionist saboteurs.’ In doing so, the Baath regime has reneged on one… Continue reading

A book market held every Sunday in Karachi.  Image: Getty

The importance of Pakistan’s literary festivals

6 March 2013 15:59

For a country often conceived of only in terms of its troubles with terrorism, extremists and bombs, you could easily be forgiven for thinking that, in Pakistan, all forms of… Continue reading